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Five Palestinian children killed in Syria

The United Nation agency for Palestinian refugees is reporting that three separate incidents in Syria claimed last week the lives of five children. One of the children died in Dera’a and four others in Damascus.

According to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East UNRWA, Mohammad Al-Khateeb (aged 14) was killed on March 15 by a bullet as he was returning home on foot after buying bread from a bakery in his neighborhood in Dera’a. On March 19, Hisham Mahmoud (aged 10) and Farhat Mubarak (aged 11), were killed at the crossroad of Yazour and Safad Streets in Yarmouk, Damascus. They were returning home from classes at a community-run learning center when an explosive shell detonated nearby, killing them instantly. In a separate incident on the same day, two brothers, Ali Mijel (aged 14) and Abdullah Mijel (aged 15), were killed along with their aunt and cousin when an explosive shell hit their home on Hittin Street in Sbeineh Camp.

Prior to the Syrian Civil War, there were approximately one million Palestinian refugees living in the country. Last November, the PLO estimated that over 600 Palestinians died in the war, though this number has risen considerably since. At least 20,000 Palestinians have been able to flee the country to Lebanon, while the Jordanian government continues to send Palestinian refugees back, claiming that they are not affected by the conflict in the same way other Syrian civilians are. However, many believe that the as refugees, the Palestinians are actually more vulnerable than other groups.

Following the killing of 30 other Palestinians last month, Christopher Gunness, a spokesperson for UNRWA, told +972 that “refugees by their nature are already among the most vulnerable people in any society, and in a situation like in Syria clearly they are more vulnerable.”

30 Palestinians killed last week in Syria
‘Why don’t you write about Syria?’

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    1. rsgengland

      The UN and its agencies ignore the ongoing tragedy in Syria, but continue to devote an inordinately large amount of time to bashing Israel.
      The UN members, including Syria, probably use Israel as a smokescreen to hide their atrocities against their own people.
      There has not been one UN resolution condemning Syria’s behavior over the past two years.
      Whenever there is a possibility of anything against Syria in the UN, those paragons of ‘civil liberties’ such as Iran, Sudan, Mauritania, Pakistan, Cuba, Russia and a host of other countries gang up together to prevent it.
      Besides those Palestinians how many thousands of Syrians are dead.

      Reply to Comment
      • Russia’s (and often China’s) implied veto has prevented any action, effective or not.

        It is not true the UN is not involved. UN relief is involved in Turkey and Jordan.

        Israel bashing is not being used to hide what is happening in Syria. Rather, I see a tendency to imply that Arabs are dangerous as evidenced in Syria, then overlaying this observation on Palestinians. Gaza is said to confirm the observation outright; the Bank is generally asserted to be latently dangerous as Arab.

        Reply to Comment
    2. Joel

      Please Noam.
      Don’t make us estimate the relative value of a Palestinian child’s blood compared to a Syrian child’s blood.
      Can’t we do something easy and painless like commemorate the 10 year anniversary of Rachel Corrie’s death or watch a video loop of a Jewish customer smacking his Palestinian waiter because he took sway a bottle of mayo?
      C’mon for chrissakes!

      Reply to Comment
      • “Don’t make us estimate the relative value of a Palestinian child’s blood compared to a Syrian child’s blood.”

        The next time you, Rsgengland, or anyone else brings up ‘What about Syria?’ on a post about army abuse of Palestinian kids, the killing of Gazans, or some other related topic, I will be quoting this back at you. Because isn’t this exactly what all the what-about-Syria comments try to achieve?

        I don’t think Noam is trying to make such a comparison, more pointing out that migrant and refugee communities are always particularly vulnerable in any new conflict (exemplified by Jordan’s refusal to absorb fleeing Palestinians). This doesn’t mean that Syrians have it easy or that their lives are less valuable. With Syria in such chaos, each subcommunity is vulnerable in its own way.

        Reply to Comment
        • rsgengland

          This article was about Syrians killing Palestinians.
          The Syrian army and opposition do not seem to be particularly discriminating in who gets killed.
          At least the Israelis try to identify a target before striking [though unfortunately there is sometimes collateral damage].
          What is happening in Syria [and the wider Arab world] does play a very important part in Israeli strategic thinking.
          If Israel has to make peace with anyone, the neighbors views and actions will be of major significance if the results are to be successful.

          Reply to Comment
          • This article is not about ‘Syrians killing Palestinians’; it is about the fragility experienced by already-displaced populations during time of conflict, which is well-documented across multiple conflict zones.

            You repeatedly bring up Syria on discussion threads that have nothing to do with Syria as a way of minimising any Palestinian suffering. Articles on the demolition of Palestinian homes are met by you with descriptions of ancient Jewish prayer for return to the Holy Land. Killings are tidied out of the way as ‘collateral damage’, homelessness and displacement are easily brushed off with a siddur, and what Palestinians endure will never be as bad as what is happening in Syria anyway. Joel has also compared Palestine and Syria in the past, so I found it ironic that he would react as he did to what he perceives as an identical comparison from Noam.

            As I have said before, Syria only seems to be of interest to you in so far as it functions as a convenient smokescreen for what is happening in the Occupied Territories. Syria may well be part of Israel’s ‘strategic thinking’, but it’s also a noticeable part of your own on this site. So long as you are using Syrian deaths to try and trivialise Palestinian experience under military rule (from the comfort of the UK) and to derail discussions on other threads, it will be difficult to talk to you about the political situation with any seriousness.

            Reply to Comment
          • rsgengland

            The headline of this article specifically mentions Syria.
            Syria and locations in Syria are mentioned nine times in the article.
            Jordan and Lebanon are mentioned in the article.
            The article is about Palestinians in Syria.
            Spin it whichever way, it is still an article about Palestinians in Syria.

            Reply to Comment
          • Joel


            A little before your time, there was something called Black September. In 1970, the Palestinians living in Jordan attempted a coup against the King of Jordan.
            The Palestinians lost and the son of the than King of Jordan now sits upon the throne of the Kingdom.
            You may have forgotten this historical footnote, but the Jordanian monarchy surely has not.

            And who aided the Palestinians in their coup attempt?
            The Assad family of Syria.

            Reply to Comment
          • Are you seriously trying to argue that people who are fleeing for their lives with little except the clothes on their backs represent a deadly fifth column (to a country where roughly 70% of the population is Palestinian already), and should therefore be packed back into the slaughterhouse? By making such an argument, you’ve already decided which children’s blood is worth something and which children’s blood is forfeit, so your reaction to Noam now appears even more hypocritical than it did initially.

            Reply to Comment
    3. Jordan will not admit the Syrian Palestinian refugees because it fears an extending indigenous radical network of its own resident Palestinians (by descent) thereby. Similarly, Jordan will not grant Bank residents citizenship (again) for fear of network building unstable to the monarchy.

      To be an external (non Jordanian) Palestinian is to be dangerous. I suspect there is also such feeling directed toward Jordanina Palestinians to some degree. As in some anti-Semitism, a fear of the group’s network potential leads to exclusion and much worse.

      Reply to Comment

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